A Different Strain Of The Ebola Virus Confirmed In DR Congo
The Democratic Republic of Congo has confirmed new cases of the Ebola virus attack in its northern town Gera. Causing new fears of the lethal virus spreading beyond the West African countries. According to a statement made by the government spokesman, two people in the Gera town have tested positive for the Ebola virus.
In a bid to contain and monitor the Ebola outbreak, a lab and quarantine facilities have already been erected in the town, located some 750 miles away from the capital, Kinshasa. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), DR Congo has done its own test, but the U.N. agency lab is also conducting its own independent tests which will also determine the virus’ strain.
According to DR Congo’s test, the virus strain in the central African nation is a different strain from that in West Africa nations of Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea and Nigeria, which has so far claimed about 1,500 lives.
First reported case of the Ebola virus was back in 1976, in Congo and Sudan and the virus was christened after a river found in Congo. The central African country Congo has so far suffered six Ebola outbreak ever since. But the Ebola outbreak currently being witnessed in West Africa has been described by WHO as the worst outbreak in history.
The African continent has recorded three different strains of the Ebola virus: Sudan, Bundibugyo and Zaire. DR Congo has in the past suffered from the Zaire strain, but so far its has not been confirmed to be the same strain in this latest outbreak. WHO is expected to release its own results of the believed Ebola outbreak in Congo on Monday.
13 people were reported dead as a result of a mysterious disease in the Boende area of Congo, but according to WHO, these deaths were termed as resulting from a “viral hemorrhagic fever of undetermined origin.” An outbreak in the central African country would be catastrophic given Congo’s position and the fact it borders nine different countries.
The Ebola outbreak in West Africa has led to a number of countries taking drastic measures to protect their citizens; Ivory Coast closed its borders to Liberia and Guinea indefinitely. Senegal too has since followed suite.